“Ronzoni Sono Buoni,” if you are Italian and grew up in the New York area in the great decades of the 1960’s and or 70s you know the slogan. We Italians do love our past, we’re weened on it, it’s the main staple of our diet. Many are fanatical about and love it so, the must have it several times a week. I’m one. Pasta, covered in a wide variety of sauces and part of some soups, Pasta Fagole (Pasta Fazool), in some Minestrone’s, Pasta & Peas, and Pasta con Ceci. Yes, we are weened on it. Mommy gave me, my bothers and sister Pastina coated in a bit of butter and Parmigiano when we were just toddlers and every so often I have to pick up a box of Ronzoni Pastina, as I love and crave it still, and of late as with many my age, you start crazy things you loved as a child, thus my stints with Pastina. “Ronzoni Sono Buoni,” it means, Ronzoni is So Good, and that it is. This brand of Pasta, born in New York City at the turn of the 20th Century has been a mainstay of not only Italian-Americans of the East Coast but, for all. For years before the surge of many a imported pasta product in the U.S. Ronzoni, was not the only game in town for Macaroni, there was the Prince and Creamette, as well, but ronzoni dominated the market and though I don’t have stats, I would wage to say that 85 to 90 % of all commercial pasta sold in the New York, New Jersey, and Philadelphia areas was Ronzoni, the pasta in the bright blue boxes, Ronzoni Sono Buoni. God I wonder how many plates and bowls of Spaghetti, Ziti and other Ronzoni pastas I ate over the years, starting with Pastina as a toddler and moving to Spaghetti with Tomato Sauce or Meatballs, Baked Ziti, Stuffed Shells and more. Oh stuffed shells, they bring back memories of my mother who loved them. We had them often, along with Lasagna made with Ronzoni Lasagana. You don’t see Stuffed Shells around that much any more, they used to be on many a restaurant and even more home menus. There popularity has waned, but every once and a while I’ll pick up a box of Ronzoni jumbo shells, just for the purpose of bringing back those memories of mom making them and me loving them as a child. I’ll make a batch of tomato sauce, cook the Ronzoni Shells, and stuffe them with ricotta and Parmigiano, bake them in tomato sauce, and “Voila” Stuffed Shells of days gone by. I do the same with a Pastina as I still love the dish so, dressed with butter and fresh grated Parmigiano Reggiano. Yum, delicious little pleasure you can whip up in minutes and bring back versions of your youth. All with some butter, Parmigiano and a box of ronzoni Pastia. That’s Ronzoni, every bit a part of my life and youth as a Slinky, Etch-A-Sketch, The Three Stooges, Saturday Morning Cartoons, and all the favorites of my youth, “Ronzon Sono Buoni” it’s so good.
Article: Daniel Bellino Zwicke